Laus Group of Companies Chairman and CEO and Ford Philippines dealer principal Lisset Laus-Velasco has been named as 2021 Ford Salute to Dealers Honoree.
Salute To Dealers is a Ford Motor Company initiative that recognizes dealer partners who work toward improving the lives of individuals and their communities. Started by Edsel B. Ford II and now under the leadership of Henry Ford III, the program has honored over 130 Ford dealers over the last 20 years.
A total of eighty (80) dealers from around the world were nominated for the Award. An independent team of judges then selected the final six (6) honorees based on scope of activities, length of participation, and personal involvement in their causes.
Laus-Velasco joins five (5) Ford dealer partners all over the globe who are awarded for their impactful social contributions, philanthropic work, and community service. She is the lone honoree from Ford’s International Markets Group and the second Ford dealer principal from the Philippines to win the award.
Laus-Velasco was recognized for her advocacy on education. “Education is very close to my heart. I truly believe that every human being should have the right, the privilege, and the opportunity to finish his or her studies. As an entrepreneur and mother, I am passionate about work associated with education, children and communities because I truly believe that having access to education, proper nutrition and preparing the youth, we are able to build a better community, a better society through children who are properly educated and prepared to take on the future,” she shares.
In September 1992, her late father, Mr. Levy P. Laus, founded the Levy P. Laus Scholarship Foundation to aid educational and financial support to deserving students to secure a college diploma. In 2018, it was renamed to Levy P. Laus Foundation to expand its reach to other charitable causes.
The Laus Group also partnered with Rise Against Hunger which aims to end hunger by providing food and life-saving aid to vulnerable communities. In October 2019, employees helped prepare 7,500 food packs for the poor families and barangays in Pampanga.
At the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic last year, the Levy P. Laus Foundation, through the Department of Education, extended assistance by adopting three (3) public schools in Pampanga and sponsoring their online learning modules dubbed as “Alpabasa” – a game-based reading program that aims to make children fluent readers by incorporating music, games, and other fun activities in their daily learning.
CLTV36, the regional TV station of the LausGroup, is also the official partner of the Department of Education in the region in providing a safe place to continue learning through innovative teaching modules using television as a medium with TeleSkwela, reaching over 1.3 million students, parents, and teachers.
Employees of the LausGroup are also receiving financial assistance from the company to help ease their burden in paying for the tuition fees of their children or siblings. The company offers educational loan which the employees can avail at no interest.
“The LPL Foundation has strongly supported educational charities since its inception, sending many marginalized but deserving students to colleges and universities of their choice, and all of whom earned their degrees and now have successful careers,” Laus-Velasco says. “It is through my father and his legacy that we are guided by his advocacy for countryside development, and we intend to continue his legacy together with my mother Tess and the rest of the family members, in providing the necessary support to facilitate education for young Filipinos, particularly those from vulnerable and disadvantaged communities more so during this Covid-19 pandemic.”
Receiving the 2021 Ford Salute to Dealers Award, Laus-Velasco shares her recognition with the rest of the officers and employees of the Ford Laus Group dealerships headed by Ms. Lina Santos. “Through all of you, the foundation is able to reach and impact far more lives than we could ever have imagined. Corporate social responsibility has been part of the DNA of the Laus Group of Companies not because it feels good, but because the community has been part of our success, and we would like to pay forward.”